It is the time of the autumn equinox in the southern hemisphere. Observing nature this week, I realised how my concept of autumn has been shaped more by cultural images than by the reality of my surroundings. So often we trust our assumptions more than our senses!


The oaks have started rusting –
goldening their summer green.
Leaves announcing autumn
empty themselves of nourishment
in this season of shedding.

But wait – look again:
this is not the sum of the season.
Cabbage tree tells a different tale,
crowned in a golden explosion
of new leaves emerging.

 Here in the south
autumn contains spring:
the softness of a plectranthus haze,
amaryllis bulbs breaking through
to flower their hearts out.

Shedding and emerging –
two gestures inter-being.
We too can dance this paradox
as dark and light find balance
at the autumn equinox.